Automakers ranging from big to small are racing to build hybrid and electric cars to take advantage of tax benefits and increasing concerns on air quality in major cities. A dozen electric and hybrid cars are likely to be launched in the next three years with Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M), Hyundai, Toyota and Nissan joining market leader Maruti Suzuki in adopting this technology. M&M is currently working on XUV mild hybrid, which will be launched in the next 6-12 months. It is alternatively working on four-door versions E2O and KUV electric. Likewise Hyundai’s mid-size sedan Verna will get a soft hybrid next year and is exploring the same technology for the upcoming Tucson SUV. Other multinational companies such as Volkswagen, Toyota, Honda and Nissan are planning to focus on more expensive pure hybrids and electric vehicles. These carmakers will be launching pure hybrids in the higher segments where price tag is not an issue. Guillaume Sicard, president of Nissan Motor India, said his company may introduce mild hybrids but wants a consistent policy.
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